Caledon, Ontario — August 10, 2015 — The Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) issued over 100 tickets in Caledon over the long weekend to help raise awareness of the province’s Move Over law.
The Caledon Enterprise reports the initiative, which ran July 31 through August 3, is part of an ongoing effort to educate motorists on the importance of road safety rules and serve as a reminder to obey the law to avoid fines.
According to the report, the weekend saw around 125 charges laid due to noncompliance of the legislation put in place to protect roadside workers, requiring drivers to slow down and move to an adjacent lane when approaching a parked emergency vehicle–such as a police cruiser, ambulance or tow truck.
Caledon OPP detachment commander Tim Melanson says that officers saw a definite need for the recent campaign.
“We have had officers in Caledon grazed who had to take evasive action, we have also had cruisers hit and side swiped,” Melanson said in the report. “But this enforcement isn’t just for the safety of emergency workers, it’s for everyone. Some people will see emergency vehicles at the last minute and yank over, causing another accident, some won’t get out of the way of emergency vehicles, and we have even seen people just stop in the middle of the road.”
OPP typically target long weekends to zero in on specific road safety themes throughout the year—a tactic, Melanson says, that tends to see results.
“It is just like distracted driving or seat belts, we enforce them year round but since we did our seat belt campaign, compliance has gone up which is terrific,” Melanson said in the report.
Those found in violation of the province’s Move Over law face fines ranging from $400 to $2,000 and three demerit points on first offence. As of mid-June, 763 charges had been laid across Ontario this year.